Tokyo 3 Days Itinerary for First Timer

Tokyo Itinerary: 3 Days in Tokyo

Visiting Tokyo for the first time? As the city offers countless attractions to tourists, you may never have enough time to see everything you want with the limited time. It is essential to plan your trip ahead so you can spend your precious time wisely and efficiently.

In this article, I’m sharing a suggested itinerary in Tokyo for 3 days, especially planned for a first-time visitor. With this travel guide, you can experience the best highlights of Tokyo including historic site, high-tech, unique culture and delicious food only in 3 days. So let’s check it out!

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Day 1: Learn the History of Tokyo in the Nostalgic Downtown Area

While Tokyo is famous for its modern buildings and skyscrapers, there are also well-preserved historic sites where you can immerse into the good old days of Japan. Asakusa-Ueno area is called “Shitamachi”, presenting as an old downtown with nostalgic atmosphere, rich culture and history.


The iconic temple of Tokyo, Sensoji Temple is located near Asakusa station. Be welcomed with the massive Kaminarimon gate, stroll on the Nakamise Street lined with souvenir and local snacks shops. Asakusa has plenty of long established restaurants offering delicious and authentic Japanese dishes. Traditional cultural activities such as wearing kimono and riding a rickshaw are also available in this area.


Visit Ueno Park,  a specious public park in Tokyo, especially popular site for cherry blossom viewing. The park also includes some interesting sites such as temple, shrine, museums and Ueno Zoo, the largest Zoo in Tokyo. Then hit Ameyoko street, the most lively and chaotic street market in Tokyo, offering an abundance of choice for shopping and dining.


Located between Ueno and Asakusa, Kappabashi is the street lined with local shops mostly dealing with cooking and restaurant-related products. A lot of professional chefs shop here to get high quality kitchen tools including Japanese knives. If you are a cooking enthusiast, this is the place to shop.

-Tokyo Skytree

Approx 20 mins walk along the Sumida River from Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Japan’s tallest building Tokyo Skytree is located in Oshiage area. Visit there at night for the breathtaking view of the city from the 350m high observation deck.

Day 2: Be Amazed by Otaku Culture, the Taste of Fresh Seafood and Tokyo’s Architectural Marvel

Day 2, let’s explore the unique culture of Japan including


The place to meet Otaku (geek) culture and shop high-tech gadgets in Japan. Akihabara has millions of interesting shops related to Japanese Otaku culture such as gaming, animation, manga, maid cafe, underground idols and so on. There are also several big shopping malls of electronic gadgets offering the latest products at competitive price.


Tsukiji is known for the Tsukiji Market, the world’s largest fish market located in central Tokyo. The inner market of Tsukiji (where the famous tuna auction was held) was relocated to Toyosu in 2018, but the outer market of Tsukiji is still very much worth visiting as you can explore the rich food culture of Tokyo. Numbers of shops and restaurants run their business in this area, selling fresh food products directly delivered from Toyosu Market.

-Hamarikyu Gardens

Only 5 mins away from Tsukiji outer market, Hamarikyu Gardens is a 25 ha park very rich in nature and history even though it’s located in the heart of the city. The park includes a authentic Japanese garden, pond, tea house and so on. It’s a great spot to stop by and relax surrounded by nature while being in a city center.

-Tokyo Tower

In less than 10 mins subway ride from the Tsukiji area, you can reach the iconic Tokyo Tower. The tower is recommended to watch from distance as well as to go to the observation deck inside, where you can enjoy the spectacular view of the city. Tokyo Tower is located in Roppongi area, the bustling area with numbers of restaurants and bars gather.

Day 3: Be a Photographer at Tokyo’s Iconic Streets

Let’s not forget about three most lively districts of Tokyo: Harajuku, Shibuya and Shinjuku, which are center of Japanese young culture and known for busy streets. The bustling streets are lined by billboards, shop displays and outstanding architecture and display the chaotic but fascinating view in day and night. These areas are perfect for shopping, dining, night-out and photography.


Before hitting the bustling shopping area, let’s visit Meiji shrine to start off your day, the most visited shrine in Japan, which is located near JR Harajuku Street. After a pleasant walk in the shrine, moved on to Takeshita Street which is lined by hundreds of shops, restaurants and cafes, offering clothes, accessories, street snacks, all related to the kawaii culture. There are also large shopping complexes like Laforet Harajuku and Tokyu Plaza within the area. Harajuku also is home to many cool buildings and street arts for photography.


Together with Harajuku, Shibuya is known as the center of young culture in Tokyo. The iconic building, Shibuya 109 is a mecca of fashion among young generation, and there are many more shopping complexes gathering in the area including Shibuya PARCO, Scramble Square, Hikarie and Stream. The outlets of popular shops such as UNIQLO, MUJI, LOFT and Don Quijote are also located there. Shibuya is a popular area for photography with two popular icons: the Hachiko Statue and Shibuya Scramble Crossing.


Take Yamanote line from Shibuya and visit Shinjuku, the district that never sleeps. Don’t worry if it’s already getting late, because Shinjuku gets more energetic and vibrant when the night gets deeper. The  district offers a plenty choice for nightlife and entertainments. Visit Tokyo’s biggest red light district, Kabukicho to capture the mesmerizing view of the bustling street with neon lights. Hop Izakaya bars and get tipsy like locals in Omoide Yokocho alley and Golden Gai street. Also don’t forget to visit the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings, one of the coolest high-rise building in Tokyo, which has free observatory.

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<<Where to Stay in Tokyo: Shibuya or Shinjuku>>

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Are you planning your first trip to Japan?? Then, I bet these articles could be a great help for you! 😉

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Written by

"The world is my oyster" A globetrotter 🌎 and hammock lover 🌞 who loves taking adventures to fuel wanderlust. Born and raised in Japan, I have lived and explored countries around the world. As a resident of Japan and based on my travel experience, I'd love to share my knowledge and tips for travelling Japan with my readers. I hope my story will help you plan your trip and have a great time in Japan 🌈